• Protest sign against NT intervention (NITV News)Source: NITV News
Former chief minister Clare Martin has revealed former Prime Minister John Howard didn't consult her before launching Canberra's controversial 2007 response to alleged child sex abuse in the Northern Territory.
Lucy Hughes Jones

24 Feb 2017 - 9:05 AM  UPDATED 24 Feb 2017 - 9:51 AM

Ms Martin denounced she was given no warning before Mr Howard sent the army in and implemented its special measures emergency response, known as ‘the Intervention’, which included changes to welfare, housing and law enforcement.

"There was no consultation," the former Labor politician said from Darwin on Thursday where she joined fellow ex chief ministers Stephen Hatton, Marshall Perron and Terry Mills for the NT Governance Summit.

She says Mr Howard only called to inform her that the policies were going ahead. When she offered to fly to Canberra to discuss the issue, he brushed her off.

"He said, 'I'm too busy to talk to you'. That was seriously offensive," Ms Martin said.

Book sparks fresh debate about impact of Intervention
One of the most controversial aspects of federal government policy has been the Northern Territory Intervention. Eight years after it began, a new book has sparked fresh debate about its ongoing impact.

Last October, Patricia Anderson, who co-wrote the Little Children Are Sacred report released in 2007, labelled the Intervention a "huge betrayal" that still disenfranchises Indigenous people 10 years on.

Ms Martin said Territorians will continue to be treated as second class citizens until relations with the Commonwealth are improved.

The former chief ministers from different eras and political persuasions gathered at Charles Darwin University on Thursday. All agreed the Territory's past four years of Country Liberals Party rule were a disgrace and an embarrassment.

The CLP's single term in office was marred by scandals, leadership spills and 18 cabinet reshuffles.